Wednesday, February 27, 2019

27 - Alexander Miles - Hold The Door, Please!

Alexander Miles

Alexander Miles

1838? - 1918

Who Was He?

The Brownstone Miles Built

His biography is one of a successful man doing businessman things. If this blog was about that, this would be a really long entry. It isn't, so I am going to summarize:

Alexander Miles was born someplace around 1838. Sites vary, but truthfully, this information seems to be unknown.

He was in an interracial marriage with an older woman and had one child with her and at least two stepchildren.

He was a barber.

He sold insurance to black folks who could not get it.

He was a landlord.

He was very successful.

What Did He Invent?

The story goes that he and his daughter Grace were riding in an elevator, and the doors had not been properly closed, and he felt it was quite dangerous.

In fact, elevator travel was quite dangerous. There was a system for closing the doors, but it required the person in the elevator to activate it.

Miles set out to improve the system.

What Is His Legacy?

The next time you encounter an elevator, say a thank you to Alexander Miles.

He's the reason the door closes and doesn't open again until the elevator arrives.

It doesn't open on your trip up or down either...unless it is broken, and that is not his fault!

Celebrate Black History!

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